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The First 100 Hours - Keeping Track  
User currently offlineAeroWesty From United States of America, joined Oct 2004, 20322 posts, RR: 63
Posted (7 years 6 months 4 days 9 hours ago) and read 1565 times:

In another thread, I copied down the Democrat's plan for the First 100 Hours in the new Congress:

TUESDAY: Implement the remaining recommendations that the 9/11 commission made two years ago;
WEDNESDAY: Raise the federal minimum wage from $5.15 to $7.25 an hour over two years;
THURSDAY: Expand federally funded stem-cell research;
FRIDAY, JAN. 12: Allow the federal government to negotiate for lower Medicare prescription drug costs;
JAN. 17: Cut interest rates on federally subsidized student loans from 6.8 percent to 3.4 percent;
JAN. 18: End some subsidies for oil companies and invest more money in renewable energy.

Before they began the 100-hour measures, the Democrats were to press for new restrictions on gifts and meals from lobbyists, limiting or banning privately sponsored travel for members and their staff, increased disclosure of earmarks and new budget rules that would require offsets to any new spending to control the federal deficit.

I've been busy with a few other things that have not allowed me to keep track of everything they've done this week. Where do we stand? Does anyone know of a website where anyone's keeping track?


International Homo of Mystery
46 replies: All unread, showing first 25:
 
User currently offlineRJpieces From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 1, posted (7 years 6 months 4 days 9 hours ago) and read 1554 times:

Quoting AeroWesty (Thread starter):
Does anyone know of a website where anyone's keeping track?

http://www.congress.gov

Click on "On the House Floor now" on the right side of the screen. You can select which days you want to look at there, and it has all of the information you want to know including roll calls of how members voted.

For example, here is the Roll Call for H.R. 3, the Stem Cell Research Act:
http://clerk.house.gov/evs/2007/roll020.xml


User currently offlineAeroWesty From United States of America, joined Oct 2004, 20322 posts, RR: 63
Reply 2, posted (7 years 6 months 4 days 9 hours ago) and read 1550 times:

Quoting RJpieces (Reply 1):
Click on "On the House Floor now" on the right side of the screen. You can select which days you want to look at there, and it has all of the information you want to know including roll calls of how members voted.

Excellent, thanks. I didn't even think of going right to the source.



International Homo of Mystery
User currently offlineAirCop From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 3, posted (7 years 6 months 4 days 8 hours ago) and read 1537 times:

The minmum wage and stem cell both passed the house with bi-partisan support, although Mr. Bush will veto the stem cell, and he also promises a veto on the bill to ALLOW please note not require negotiate for lower drug cost. Heck, this is more than the last Republican congress did in two years for the ordinary citizens of this country.

User currently offlineAeroWesty From United States of America, joined Oct 2004, 20322 posts, RR: 63
Reply 4, posted (7 years 6 months 4 days 8 hours ago) and read 1527 times:

Quoting AirCop (Reply 3):
although Mr. Bush will veto the stem cell, and he also promises a veto on the bill to ALLOW please note not require negotiate for lower drug cost.

I caught a sound bite last night on the news that because the VA negotiates directly with drug companies, but not Medicare, veteran's costs for medications are on average 60% lower than for seniors. I'll have to read up on the text of the bill to see why our president doesn't want the same pricing advantage we already know is achievable.



International Homo of Mystery
User currently offlineSearpqx From Netherlands, joined Jun 2000, 4343 posts, RR: 10
Reply 5, posted (7 years 6 months 4 days 8 hours ago) and read 1526 times:

I was going to put this information in the thread on 'Disappointing Democrats', but it appears to have gone off track, so I'll stick this here. You can argue with the intent of the bills all you want, but at least in this sense, the Dems are keeping their word.

Finished are new rules on ethics, lobbying and budgeting - part of the Democrats' 100-hour promise in November but not included on Pelosi's clock. Also completed are the passage of three bills: antiterrorism measures, a minimum-wage increase and expanding federally funded stem cell research.

With just three bills to go, and one of those scheduled for passage Friday, Democrats appear on their way to accomplishing their promise, regardless of which clock is used.

From Seattle Times/AP Clock ticking on Dems' 100-hour agenda



"The two most common elements in the universe are Hydrogen and stupidity"
User currently offlineAeroWesty From United States of America, joined Oct 2004, 20322 posts, RR: 63
Reply 6, posted (7 years 6 months 4 days 8 hours ago) and read 1521 times:

Quoting Searpqx (Reply 5):
With just three bills to go, and one of those scheduled for passage Friday, Democrats appear on their way to accomplishing their promise

Fantastic to hear. An example of good ol' San Francisco values hard at work, I see.  Wink



International Homo of Mystery
User currently offlineGraphic From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 7, posted (7 years 6 months 4 days 8 hours ago) and read 1508 times:

Quoting AeroWesty (Thread starter):
WEDNESDAY: Raise the federal minimum wage from $5.15 to $7.25 an hour over two years;

Bad idea

Quoting AeroWesty (Thread starter):
THURSDAY: Expand federally funded stem-cell research;

Good idea

Quoting AeroWesty (Thread starter):
FRIDAY, JAN. 12: Allow the federal government to negotiate for lower Medicare prescription drug costs;

Good idea

Quoting AeroWesty (Thread starter):
JAN. 17: Cut interest rates on federally subsidized student loans from 6.8 percent to 3.4 percent;

Very good idea

Quoting AeroWesty (Thread starter):
JAN. 18: End some subsidies for oil companies and invest more money in renewable energy.

Also a good idea.

seems like they're on the right track...so far.


User currently offlineANCFlyer From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 8, posted (7 years 6 months 4 days 8 hours ago) and read 1496 times:

Quoting AeroWesty (Reply 2):
I didn't even think of going right to the source.

 banghead  wink 

Quoting AeroWesty (Reply 4):
veteran's costs for medications are on average 60% lower than for seniors.

For some, not all. And the co-pay just went up again. I don't take many drugs - and nothing on a daily basis (unless you could Schmirnoff or Tallisker). But I know some vets that do, and the costs - as with civilians - continues to rise. Was a time, the out of pocket to a Vet was Zero.

I think the retirees in this country - regardless of status (vet or otherwise) get fleeced pretty good by the Drug Companies. Any time now, Congress can deal with that. I watch my Father put out a couple hundred $$$ a month on scrips . . . the same drugs available in Canada for a quarter the cost.

Quoting AeroWesty (Reply 6):
An example of good ol' San Francisco values

 vomit 

It's just good old fashion taking care of business. Nothing to do with SFO . . . same thing they should have been doing all along.


I am concerned about the minimum wage increase on the economy, not that I don't think folks deserve it, I think they do . . . I am wondering when we'll see the other show fall - job cuts, inflation increase. How long will it take before those two factors rear their ugly heads?


User currently offlineFalcon84 From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 9, posted (7 years 6 months 4 days 8 hours ago) and read 1482 times:

Quoting AirCop (Reply 3):
Heck, this is more than the last Republican congress did in two years for the ordinary citizens of this country.

You forgot one thing: the Republican Congress doesn't give a rats' behind about the ordinary citizen; they gave huge windfalls to banks with this atrocious bankruptcy bill, which only penalized people, and made it more difficult for them to get their financial lives back in order; they give billions in corporate welfare to big business; they give huge tax cuts to the wealthy, while giving almost nothing back for everyone else.

This Congress has been more active in one week than the last one in 2 years. It's truly

Quoting Graphic (Reply 7):
Quoting AeroWesty (Thread starter):
WEDNESDAY: Raise the federal minimum wage from $5.15 to $7.25 an hour over two years;

Bad idea

Good idea. If we can afford huge tax breaks for the wealthy, we can afford a higher minimum wage.


User currently offlineAirCop From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 10, posted (7 years 6 months 4 days 8 hours ago) and read 1478 times:

Quoting ANCFlyer (Reply 8):

I am concerned about the minimum wage increase on the economy, not that I don't think folks deserve it, I think they do . .

And what is 37 states (alot them voters approved) already have higher minimum wages than the federal wage standard. Doesn't appear to be hurting those states. So what if one pays a nickel more for their Big Mac.


User currently offlineGraphic From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 11, posted (7 years 6 months 4 days 7 hours ago) and read 1468 times:

Quoting Falcon84 (Reply 9):
Good idea. If we can afford huge tax breaks for the wealthy, we can afford a higher minimum wage.

We can afford neither. A huge minimum wage increase leads to huge unemployment...or higher employment of illegal workers.


User currently offlineANCFlyer From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 12, posted (7 years 6 months 4 days 7 hours ago) and read 1467 times:

Quoting AirCop (Reply 10):
And what is 37 states (alot them voters approved) already have higher minimum wages than the federal wage standard. Doesn't appear to be hurting those states. So what if one pays a nickel more for their Big Mac.

Alaska included . . . and I see the cost of living here compared to other states. Which is exactly what concerns me.

Alaska and Hawaii aren' good example - as we are remote and a higher COL is almost guaranteed - but what about places like Alabama? Tennessee? Louisiana? Costs for goods will increase because the cost to produce, store, stock, sell the goods will increase. Fine and dandy if you're one of the people with a job. But what about pensioners? I don't see my Mother's SS increasing to cover the additional cost. I don't see my Father's Railroad Retirement increasing to cover the additional cost.

Therein lies a big headache. That nickel for a Big Mac may not be a big deal to you and me - to those folks on a fixed income - it's going to be.


User currently offlineFalcon84 From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 13, posted (7 years 6 months 4 days 7 hours ago) and read 1459 times:

Quoting Graphic (Reply 11):
We can afford neither. A huge minimum wage increase leads to huge unemployment...

Bull. That line has been brought out by conservatives every time anyone mentions rising the minimum wage, and it doesn't do squat. It's a scare tactic, to keep the big tax breaks out there for the wealthy.

Raise the minimum wage. It's the right thing to do for workers in this country.


User currently offlineAirCop From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 14, posted (7 years 6 months 4 days 7 hours ago) and read 1450 times:

Quoting Graphic (Reply 11):
A huge minimum wage increase leads to huge unemployment..

Could you define huge?

Quoting ANCFlyer (Reply 12):
Therein lies a big headache. That nickel for a Big Mac may not be a big deal to you and me - to those folks on a fixed income - it's going to be.

Agreed, but on the other end, you got people for what every reason (job field, lack of education, disability) that also need the little extra income. The wage increase for those workers isn't going to be big enough to change their life style, but keeping the wage at $5.15 or whatever for the past 15 years, its time for an increase.

Quoting ANCFlyer (Reply 12):
I don't see my Father's Railroad Retirement increasing to cover the additional cost.

I understand your father's pain, if I remember right, RR retirement is in lieu of Social Security. And thats another law that needs to be change, that teachers, public safety employees that don't pay in SS, but yet pay into SS for 20-30 years should be entitled to their full benefits.
In short there isn't a perfect answer for the individuals on fixed incomes now. For the younger members, advice, save for your retirement NOW.


User currently offlineGraphic From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 15, posted (7 years 6 months 4 days 7 hours ago) and read 1445 times:

Quoting Falcon84 (Reply 13):
Bull. That line has been brought out by conservatives every time anyone mentions rising the minimum wage, and it doesn't do squat. It's a scare tactic, to keep the big tax breaks out there for the wealthy.

No bull about it. Scare tactic by conservatives? maybe, but there is concrete truth behind it. Easy math here:

Your business makes a weekly revenue of $16,000.

You have 50 minimum wage ($5.15) employees working 40 hours a week.

At that rate, you're paying $10,300 weekly for labor.

Now the minimum wage increases to $7.25 so your labor cost goes up to $14,500. You can still afford to pay your employees, but instead of pulling a 30% profit margin, you're now pulling an 11% profit margin.

And that's a fixed cost. Any increase in the price of, say, oil, or for example, electricity, could put your business in the red real quick.

So you want a 30% profit margin again to be safely profitable.

You need to bring your labor cost back to $10,300. To do that, 15 employees gotta go. A 28% increase in the minimum wage has led you to layoff 30% of your workforce.

Now imagine that translating to the entire minimum wage workforce, factoring those who weren't working minimum wage before the increase, but are now because of the increase. that's gonna be anywhere in the neighborhood of 30% (that we just figured out) to 50% of the minimum wage workforce going into unemployment because employers simply can't afford to pay them all.

With that much unemployment, this business's weakly profit is bound to go down because not as many people can afford to buy their product.

Scare tactic? maybe. Concrete evidence: I'd say so.

I voted mostly left during the last election, but I didn't vote to increase our state's minimum wage, nor do I support any increase in the minimum wage. Many of the folks working minimum wage are hard workers and on a personal level I'm sure they do deserve better, but the economy simply can't support it.


User currently offlineFalcon84 From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 16, posted (7 years 6 months 4 days 7 hours ago) and read 1440 times:

Quoting Graphic (Reply 15):
Scare tactic? maybe.

No maybe. Yes, absolutely. So it's better to keep these employees in low wages, just to make a few more $$$.

Sorry, but I'll go with a higher working wage for Americans.


User currently offlineGraphic From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 17, posted (7 years 6 months 4 days 7 hours ago) and read 1434 times:

Quoting Falcon84 (Reply 16):
So it's better to keep these employees in low wages, just to make a few more $$$.

Yes, it is, because that way there are 50 people making some money rather than 35 people making slightly more money and 15 people making no money.


User currently offlineFalcon84 From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 18, posted (7 years 6 months 4 days 7 hours ago) and read 1432 times:

Quoting Graphic (Reply 17):
Yes, it is, because that way there are 50 people making some money rather than 35 people making slightly more money and 15 people making no money.

I'm not buying it. I don't care what your "facts" say. Giving Americans more financial buying and savings power is not a bad thing. This will cost few, if any jobs. It's a scare tactic to keep people who don't make a lot in poverty conditions.


User currently offlineAirCop From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 19, posted (7 years 6 months 4 days 7 hours ago) and read 1432 times:

Quoting Graphic (Reply 15):
Scare tactic? maybe. Concrete evidence: I'd say so.

I realize that you are young, but these are the same arguments used 15 years ago and prior in regards to raising the minmum wage. (When I first started to work in high school in the early 70's it was $1.50hr). Anyway the arguments haven't proven to be true. For example what kind of businesses pay minmum wages now. I would agrue most of them are fast food, movie houses, okay maybe Wal-Mart, but the businesses that pay these wages will actually raise their prices, and because of the type of business it is, it won't have any affect on the unemployment rate nor will it hurt the profit margin of the business. Here in my area in Arizona, these types of business already raised their prices prior to the new wage law going into effect.

[Edited 2007-01-12 23:16:43]

User currently offlineJ_Hallgren From United States of America, joined Jun 2000, 1507 posts, RR: 0
Reply 20, posted (7 years 6 months 4 days 7 hours ago) and read 1425 times:

There is also the ripple factor to consider...that raising minimum forces a corresponding increase in many, if not most all, wages for those making above min wage...some unions have wage rates, as I understand, that are specifically linked to min so any change in it makes a ripple thru many other areas...and thus, it really doesn't help any as overall cost goes up, so you're at same level compared to others, but just at higher number.


COBOL - Not a dead language yet!
User currently offlineGraphic From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 21, posted (7 years 6 months 4 days 7 hours ago) and read 1417 times:

Quoting Falcon84 (Reply 18):
I'm not buying it. I don't care what your "facts" say.

"facts," "truth," "hard evidence," all just buzzwords really.  Wink

Quoting Falcon84 (Reply 18):
Giving Americans more financial buying and savings power is not a bad thing.

I agree.

Quoting Falcon84 (Reply 18):
This will cost few, if any jobs.

You're wrong.

Quoting Falcon84 (Reply 18):
It's a scare tactic to keep people who don't make a lot in poverty conditions.

Kool aide tastes good today?

Quoting AirCop (Reply 19):
I realize that you are young, but these are the same arguments used 15 years ago and prior in regards to raising the minmum wage. (When I first started to work in high school in the early 70's it was $1.50hr).

Lets have some fun with inflation.

The anual rate of inflation is around 5%. That means that in 2 years something that cost $1.00 today is going to cost $1.05 or thereabouts in 2 years (ceterus perebus...for the most part, not factoring in something like a massive terrorist attack or natural catastrophe that could artificially pump inflation much higher). In 2 years, the minimum wage goes up 28%. That means that if you're paying a guy $1.00 to do something now, in 2 years you'll be paying him $1.28. But for every $1.28 that you spend, you only make $1.05.

See the problem now?

Quoting AirCop (Reply 19):
For example what kind of businesses pay minmum wages now. I would agrue most of them are fast food, movie houses, okay maybe Wal-Mart,

Wal Mart is widely known to use illegal workers at lower wages. You can't factor in a black market as a model for the general economy, because

Quoting AirCop (Reply 19):
but the businesses that pay these wages will actually raise their prices, and because of the type of business it is, it won't have any affect on the unemployment rate nor will it hurt the profit margin of the business.

You assume that they'll raise wages as well as prices, but what is widely assumed is that many of their employees (janitorial crews, night crews) are illegal workers working already below minimum wage. So why would they have to raise prices and wages?


User currently offlineFalcon84 From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 22, posted (7 years 6 months 4 days 6 hours ago) and read 1403 times:

Quoting Graphic (Reply 21):
Quoting Falcon84 (Reply 18):
This will cost few, if any jobs.

You're wrong.

I've seen it before. It's not wrong.


User currently offlineANCFlyer From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 23, posted (7 years 6 months 4 days 6 hours ago) and read 1376 times:

Quoting Falcon84 (Reply 18):
Giving Americans more financial buying

Sure about this are you Falcon? Increased wages are great, but they will cause increased costs on the producer, distrubutor, retailer . . . who will raise the Price of goods. So, will there really be an increase in buying power? I don't see it. Perhaps in the short term, until inflation catches up.


User currently offlineAirCop From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 24, posted (7 years 6 months 4 days 6 hours ago) and read 1375 times:

Quoting Falcon84 (Reply 22):
I've seen it before. It's not wrong.

 checkmark 

Quoting Graphic (Reply 21):
Wal Mart is widely known to use illegal workers at lower wages. You can't factor in a black market as a model for the general economy, because

Perhaps because firms have a large time getting people to work for $5.15hr. Even in North Dakota. I'm guessing that $5.15/hr doesn't go far.
Perhaps when you graduate and join the real work force, you might have a different perpective. Besides it's well documented lack of income also equals a increase in crime in that income level.


25 Falcon84 : Yes, I believe it will, my friend. If costs go up, they'll most likely go up a fraction of what the wages go up. I think it's always a good thing to
26 AirCop : This is from the San Francisco Chronicle regarding Paul Pelosi; The bulk of the Pelosis' money comes from investments in stocks and real estate. Opera
27 Halls120 : So where is our resident democrat basher, ASF? He isn't interested in a factual discussion of the new Congress? What a surprise......not.
28 ANCFlyer : Please understand I'm all for putting $$$ in people's pockets. That's not my concern. This increase in the wage will drive up costs to the end user -
29 AirCop : Agreed, but what did the Republicans do? Not a thing, did pass some kind of Medicare bill that costing our seniors even more. Medical care is probabl
30 Allstarflyer : That's kinda garbage there. I was on the receiving end of my 2nd airline furlough at the end of '05, and was heading towards BK (until, basically, I
31 Post contains images Piercey : nope. see: listen, big business will get affected, but small business will get slaughtered. Which is needed, but not with this big of a jump! As some
32 ANCFlyer : No argument, I was definitely against that medicare bill. . . . point I'm trying to make here my friend, is that all is not as rosey with the Minimum
33 Searpqx : All of the arguments against raising the minimum wage center around the fact that it will 'cost jobs'. Graphic's scenario is the classic representatio
34 ANCFlyer : Completely understand that . . . as I said, initially, everyone will feel good, a little extra coin, no big impact on the economy - three years out h
35 Post contains images N174UA : You're both right, and both wrong. If businesses get a tax break (or whatever W wants added to the bill to help small businesses) the impact will be
36 GuitrThree : Really? Wal Mart is widely known to use illegal workers? Since when? Since when was Wal Mart EVER busted for using illegal workers? Since when have y
37 Post contains images AirCop : Not always. No its not, some states in the 90's had less than a 2% unemployment rate, Minnesota comes to mind. But anyways, my background is in crimi
38 Halls120 : Apples and oranges. Your employer is most likely offering you a wage increase because he doesn't want to lose you to a competitor. He's calculated th
39 AeroWesty : There's a subtle thing working here, which is the Law of Diminishing Returns. AirCop has a good point, because a stable, educated workforce, will mos
40 GuitrThree : Which is why a minimum wage law is a joke anyway. I understand that to be a truly competitive company, you need to compete on all levels. This includ
41 AeroWesty : Productivity also works into this, as higher paid, happier workers, with fewer worries are more productive employees. It's not all cut and dried "if
42 AirCop : Take the example of Costco vs. Sam's Club. Costco employees after three years are making nearly $45,000 plus benefits'; Sam's Club between $8-$9 hr, t
43 GuitrThree : Good point, however, a boost in productivity without increasing sales can only mean less employees are needed to produce the same amount of product.
44 AeroWesty : It can also mean not hiring more workers, or, producing a better product more cheaply that becomes in greater demand in the marketplace, creating job
45 GuitrThree : Yep. I'll give you that one. Never myself purchased anything industrial! Maybe, maybe not. Depends upon what product the company is making. I for one
46 AeroWesty : Quite obviously, in a world economy, some jobs will be lost, no doubt. However, the opportunity exists to do things better, which stimulates demand a
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